North Code Zero – Check Out Review

North has an exciting new model in their lineup called the Code Zero. This light and aerodynamic shape is North’s first foray into the high-performance, dedicated foil kite category. It features a single strut frame with weight-reducing fabrics, bladders and reduced reinforcements in non-critical areas. With North’s massive sail loft for their North Sails sailing division, the North kite design has access to all the top materials and production techniques which ensure the high quality, top-end performance and longevity of their kites. The name Code Zero reflects North’s sailing roots with a nod to light wind racing sails. The Code Zero kite is very light and reactive in the air, and its single strut frame and mid-aspect shape that has lots of low-end power. It’s a very efficient, lightweight design that offers agile steering and stable and balanced slack line drift.

The new single strut North Code Zero!

Until now, North’s do-it-all, three-strut kite, called the North Reach was the go-to model for Foil riding. Still, the Code Zero can help up the foil game with an even easier water relaunch, which is hard to believe as the Reach is one of the best three strut water relaunching kites. The new Code Zero offers more reactivity under low line tension in light winds. Compared with the Reach the Code Zero also sits back further in the wind window, giving it more instant steering input when underpowered and better drive and control when riding a foil. The power and drive are ultra direct and easy to find.

The North Code Zero is also a kite that any level rider can use. The steering is very direct, with tight pivotal turns and quick loops that work great for foil transitions. There is also some excellent feedback on the Navigator control systems to ensure you know where the Code Zero is at all times. Aggressive loops of the kite produce low amounts of canopy flutter compared with many of the single strut kites, which highlights the superb aerodynamics of the Code Zero. The compact, pulley-free bridal system also gives the Code Zero lots of range and quick depower. Like most one-strut kites, you want to ride the Code Zero as small as possible. It generates a lot of low-end pull, and with some driving and diving, even the 7 meter can get you up on freeride foil in winds you think you might need 9 or 10 meters. The Code Zero is also ideally suited for light wind, smaller wave riding with directional surfboards, as the lightweight canopy drifts with outstanding balance and will let the rider focus on linking bottom and top turns.

For anyone who foils, rides waves or travels, the Code Zero is a kite that can take your light wind wave riding and foil game to the next level.

Sizes Tested: 7m, 9m

Kitesurfing Magazine test editor Shane Thompson on the new North Code Zero.